Nagging Neck Pain Do's & Dont's

About the Author: Harminder


Hi guys. This is Dr. James Porco with Back in Motion. I wanted to share today with you all, some do's and don'ts with neck pain.

Before we get into the do's and don'ts of managing your neck pain, I just want to talk about neck pain a little bit in general.

So neck pain is something we pretty consistently see in the clinic, whether it be a chronic or an acute bout of neck pain, both can be pretty debilitating towards your day-to-day activities. Being able to do things such as read, write, drive, be on your phone, things of that nature.

And it can come from a variety of causes from things as serious as whiplash injuries from car accidents or to just regular degeneration over time with arthritis and things of that nature.

But there are some traditional do's and don'ts that pretty much hold true, regardless of what's causing that neck pain, whether it be a chronic or an acute bout of neck pain.

Do's With Neck Pain

So a couple of things that I would recommend that you definitely do with neck pain.

Decent Posture

So first and foremost, you want to try and maintain a decent posture, right?

You don't necessarily need to be stuck in one position always, but with neck pain, you want to reduce the stress or the forces on the neck as much as possible as steroidi orali often as possible so it gives the neck a chance to heal.

So if you're sitting there with your neck like this all day, you're increasing the pressure along the joints of the neck which can create increased pain or discomfort and make the muscles around the neck tighten up.

So really focusing on keeping that head back, shoulders down, and back and relaxed as often as possible is a really good first step to reducing the stress or pain on the neck.

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Set Yourself Up For Success With Technology

The next thing is, is set yourself up for success in terms of using technology.

I know a lot of people with computers, phones, et cetera, we're always looking down. This is actually called text neck.

So we want to avoid that looking down position because it's going to bring us into that poor posture if you will.

So if you're working on a laptop or a computer, set yourself up at an ergonomically friendly height, so that way your head and your chest can stay upright. If you're using your phone, try and bring the phone up to eye level, as opposed to bringing the head down to hand level.

High Hydration Levels & Low Stress

Another big do with neck pain is managing stress and hydration levels.

So high-stress situations can cause a lot of tension in the neck.

So it can create that guarding or that shrugging position, which can also increase muscle pain or joint tightness.

Practice Good Sleeping Posture

One of the last dos that I recommend is making sure that you're sleeping in a good position, whether it be for that six to eight-hour window of sleep, you want to make sure that the pillow is at a good height.

You want to make sure that your neck is not kinked in any funky positions, that you have something that is supportive of the head, especially for my stomach sleepers out there.

When you have one of your stomachs sleeping, you have to kink your head to breathe.

That's really not an optimal position for you, especially if you're dealing with neck pain. So those are my dues of what you should be doing with neck pain.

Don'ts of Neck Pain

Keep Your Neck Moving

Some of the don'ts, the biggest don't with neck pain is keeping the neck still a lot of people get nervous with neck pain and what they tend to do is they just keep themselves locked in one position.

And when they want to turn around and they're doing this or this, or they're really guarding the neck.

What you're doing is you're setting yourself up for failure because you're not allowing the neck to get that motion and allow the joints to get lubricated and allow the blood flow to get to the neck.

Gentle and smooth motions in a pain-free range are actually beneficial for the neck.

So #1 don't have neck pain is making sure you do not hold your neck still and guard against movement. Make sure you're actively trying to move.

Over Shoulder Bags

Another don't of neck pain is carrying things over your shoulder.

So whether it be a heavy purse or a backpack or anything that you might be strapping over the shoulders, you don't necessarily either want to have that weight unevenly distributed or too heavy.

So don't one-strap your backpack and let it drag you this way because the neck's going to take that increased tension.

Same thing if the backpack or purse is just too heavy in general, because then what happens is if you're carrying that over and it's too heavy, you're going to end up like this, trying to hold that backpack up.

So avoid trying to carry things like that with possibly holding things down by the side, almost like a suitcase carry if you will. It'll give you a little bit more opportunity to get the shoulders and the neck in a good position while you're carrying whatever you're carrying.

Don't Wait Too Long To Seek Help

And one other really big don't with neck pain is don't wait too long.

So a lot of people with neck pain will tend to wait too long to seek out additional medical help.

Whether it be going to their primary care or a neck physical therapist, in this case, who can really help them find the cause of their neck pain and help transition them into healing and getting better and moving better quicker.

A lot of people wait too long and what happens is when you wait too long, you have the opportunity for that neck pain to become chronic and kind of linger for a longer period of time, which makes the healing process that much worse.

So there's a couple of dos and don'ts with neck pain.

And as always, if something is bothering you make sure you find somebody to help you, whether that be a physical therapist or your primary care to get you back into moving, get you healthy and find what's going on with your neck.

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